Music Journalism is About Not Actually Listening

Talking about Dr Feelgood … that reminds me.

I went out for a drink with my dear friend the “Dizzy Blonde” the other night.

He is a ‘sound and light man’ of quite considerable talent.

I have known him for “like, literally, ever” as teenagers say.

His company offers “amplification and lighting services” for live events across the UK.

Sound Engineers T-shirt
Sound Engineers T-shirt

He has worked with Dr Feelgood – and a whole host of other artists that he name-checks: Hawkwind, James Taylor Quartet, Zodiac Mindewarp etc. You name ‘em – and he has done their sound.

Anyway, he was talking about working with bands and musicians in clubs and bars. Slaving over all that mixing,  all that knob-turning and what-not.  He was remarking that it does not help much, in his line-of-work, if you do not particularly like the music on offer.

Then he came up with a brilliant line that I thought I’d share. He said, “At least music journalists do not have to actually listen to the music .. do they?”

I think that he saw the shocked reaction on my face, so he tried to make it better.

So he said:

“You know, Neil.  You don’t have to really, really listen though… do you?”

I kinda know what he means (he has to listen – through his headphones – to every scratch, every nuance,  every slip, and every glitch ) …

But even so,  that is a pretty damning indictment on music journalism – don’t you think?

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